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Clarification: 72 DHS Employees Not on a Terror Watchlist

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Update: Thanks to information sent in by one of our readers, we are issuing a clarification to this story.

According to factchecking website Snopes.com, the report referenced by Congressman Lynch identified 73 not 72 employees of the TSA rather than DHS and was released in June not August.

They were identified as "individuals with terrorism related category codes" rather than as being "on a terror watchlist." Since the report was partially redacted it has not been possible to identify the specifics of what those codes were. 

Furthermore the TSA Administrator who was reassigned (not DHS Director who resigned) was reassigned over an unrelated incident.

See the Snopes.com article for a fuller explanation.

Clarion apologizes for giving misleading information and always seeks to rigorously factcheck everything we publish. We are grateful to our reader who alerted us to the error. If you see any factual errors in Clarion's work in the future, please send the relevant information to [email protected]

The original story, published on December 8, is found below:

A congressional investigation found 72 employees of the Department of Homeland Security  (DHS) were on a terror watchlist at the same time.  

“Back in August, we did an investigation—the inspector general did—of the Department of Homeland Security,” Rep. Stephen Lynch (D- Massachusetts) told Boston public radio “and they had 72 individuals that were on the terrorist watch list that were actually working at the Department of Homeland Security.”

“The [former DHS] director had to resign because of that,” he added.

Similar failures were seen in France, where 57 workers at Charles de Gaulle international airport in Paris were found to be on a terror watchlist. A full review of all 1,000 employees was ordered as a result. 

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Meira Svirsky

Meira Svirsky is the editor of ClarionProject.org

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